By Kachina L. Smith, D.Ac., L.Ac.
The wisdom of Chinese medicine has consistently provided remarkable, even miraculous results for people worldwide. Among the many modalities within Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, cupping, and gua sha (pronounced gwa sah) are used for for a variety of modern day conditions as they are proven to improve circulation, reduce tension, and facilitate detoxification.
Our Licensed Acupuncturists’ AcuGlow Treatment utilizes these modalities to eliminate inflammation, swelling, and toxins in the face and helps address the root of the problem on a deeper level. The treatment promotes a gorgeous complexion as it eliminates puffiness, smoothes fine lines, and promotes lymphatic drainage. When lymph gets congested on the face and neck specifically, this can lead to: clogged pores, acne, slowed healing, dull skin, dehydrated skin, and puffy skin. Combined with acupuncture points, the treatment helps balance the body on a systemic level. We love to say it’s like two great treatments in one.
First, you’ll have a skin analysis and acupuncture assessment to determine which acupuncture points will support your health.
Often your skin concerns are a reflection of a systemic qi (energy) imbalance. We select acupuncture points on your body to help balance your skin from the inside out.
Some frequently used points are:
After inserting the needles, your practitioner will begin to prep your skin for gua sha and cupping.
After a customized cleanse you’ll receive the blood circulating and detoxifying benefits of gua sha, a gentle facial massage with an obsidian tool and TOMA Sculpting Treatment Oil. Often referred to as “facial sculpting,” gua sha smooths fine lines and wrinkles, plumps, tightens and rejuvenates skin.
Gua sha is the stroking of the skin and superficial muscle tissue using a flat jade stone, wood, or plastic tool to alleviate inflammation, break up forming scar tissue, and improve circulation. Various stones and crystals have been used for centuries to scrape the skin all over the body to treat diseases.
In terms of skincare, gua sha results in a more sculpted jawline and cheekbones, raised brow arches, less redness and a glowing appearance. Using a jade tool and gentle light pressure, you’ll find gua sha provides lift, smooths sagging, and reduces puffiness of the skin on the face, neck, and décolleté.
After a custom TOMA mask, you’ll de-puff and brighten with facial cupping, what we love to describe as feeling like “baby octopus kisses.” Small suction cups glide over the skin and gently lift the facial tissue, resulting in increased blood circulation as well as stimulating and draining of the lymph nodes.
Cupping has been documented in ancient texts about healing from as long ago as 1550 BC. Cupping is the application of plastic bell-shaped or rounded bowl-like glass “cups” to the skin using suction, created by air pump or heat, over affected areas. They release stagnant qi within the superficial muscle tissues and stimulate better circulation of blood and fluids.
Facial cupping requires the use of specialized smaller cups that do not leave any markings or redness after treatment. Using a gliding motion across the face and neck, the gentle suction helps the lymphatic fluid that causes puffiness, under-eye circles, and acne to drain and clear. You will certainly see instant plumping of fine lines and wrinkles and have that post-acupuncture “glow” after facial cupping.
Finishing up with a hydrator and sunscreen, after we remove the needles you’ll leave tighter, brighter, and glowing from the inside out. A series of three or more services is recommended for optimal, sustainable results. TOMA Essential Skin Therapy’s at-home Sculpting Facial Kit includes the gua sha tool and oil to keep up the treatment at home.